Estimate of the Situation
She said, "Welcome to the land of the living dead."
You could tell she was so broken-hearted.
She said, "Even the swap meets around here are getting pretty corrupt." - Bob Dylan
I meant to begin by writing that post-war America has seen some weird years, but how strange that phrase seems. Has there ever, really, been a post-war America? As long as I've been paying attention it's either been fighting one or several, or preparing for the next. And sometimes, like this time, doing it all simultaneously. But you know what I mean.
Think of 1947, the year of Aleister Crowley's death. The Paperclip Nazis were content to be working again. The father of American rocket science and the founder of Scientology were making magick in the Mojave desert in order to trigger apocalypse. Meanwhile, the modern UFO phenomenon exploded in the Western skies with the Kenneth Arnold sighting, Roswell (largely misinformation, but still significant for being misinformation), Maury Island and Tacoma, the latter two involving alleged retrieval of "saucer debris" by Fred Crisman and Guy Bannister respectively. Bannister of course is better known for his New Orleans' stewardship of Lee Harvey Oswald, while Crisman was one of the first persons called by Clay Shaw after hearing the news that he was a target of Jim Garrison's investigation, and was himself subpoenaed. (Crisman's "slag" from the Maury Island UFO was destroyed in a suspicious military plane crash that also killed two air force investigators. A Tacoma Times headline read "Sabotage Hinted in Crash of Army Bomber at Kelso.") Crisman was a parapolitical everyman, with curious links to UFO culture, spooks, the Mafia, the radical right and the Kennedy assassination cabal. The Michael Riconosciuto of his day, you could say, and the connections don't stop there: Riconosciuto's father Marshall was allegedly an ardent Nazi supporter and a Tacoma business associate of Crisman's, and Michael claims to have heard a lot of stories from Fred.
The National Security Act was signed into law July 26, 1947, creating the CIA, the NSA, the Department of Defense and the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Less than two years later the first Secretary of Defense, James Forrestal, took a great fall from the 16th floor of Bethesda Naval Hospital. "There is something I would like to talk to you about," Air Force Secretary Stuart Symington told him following the March 28 ceremony in which Forrestal formally stepped down. They shared a private ride back to the Pentagon. As Richard Dolan writes in UFOs and the National Security State, "what Symington said is not known, but Forrestal emerged from the ride deeply upset, even traumatized, upon arrival at his office.... When someone entered Forrestal's office several hours later, the former Secretary of Defense did not notice. Instead, he sat rigidly at his desk, staring at the bare wall, incoherent, repeating the sentence, 'you are a loyal fellow,' for several hours."
The end of 1947 saw the air force establish Project Sign. Its purpose was to "collect, collate, evaluate, and distribute to interested government agencies and contractors all information concerning sightings and phenomena in the atmosphere which can be construed to be of concern to the national security." The following year, members of Project Sign issued an "Estimate of the Situation" which has never been made public and reputedly "all but a few" copies were destroyed. Officially, the report never existed, though Air Force Major Dewey Fournet swore an affidavit in the late 1950s that he had read it and Captain Edward Ruppelt of the later Project Blue Book claimed to have seen an original copy. The estimate, according to Dolan, was that "aliens were making a full-scale observation of the Earth, but that attack did not seem imminent."It was rejected by Air Force Chief of Staff General Hoyt Vandenberg who, according to Ruppelt, said "it would cause a stampede." Shortly thereafter, policy changes at the air force removed UFOs as a subject which would be entertained seriously in public.
Nazis, black magick, UFOs, mysterious deaths and "national security." It could be any year in modern America, but 1947 appears a Rubicon of weirdness. There were strange and inhuman things in the skies, but there was also a very human manipulation of data and perception afoot, conducted by Nazi sympathizers networking with the like-minded in military intelligence. Considering the eruption of something else into our reality, and its quick cover-up and exploitation, it's almost as though they found each other.
Lately, every year has been a weird one, but just think of 2005. The bald prostitute in the press room who, even though he's likely not Johnny Gosch, reminded enough people of protected paedophile rings and their proximity to power that Gosch's name was again in the news. The London bombings, seemingly synchronized again with simulations. The possible manipulation of Katrina, the deliberate murder of New Orleans and the abduction of its children. The British Special Forces in Arab garb, opening fire on a Basra police station, and their subsequent break-out by British tanks. Ponchatoula, the murder of Pamela Vitale, the case of Richard Hamlin and more demonstrated that Satanic Ritual Abuse is not a debunked artifact of the '80s, however much the paedophile advocates of the False Memory Foundation would have you think.
These are all things that really happened; they left a kind of footprint in the real world. But for the most part their traces go unexamined, and the connections and linkages they suggest are unpursued. It can be in their faces, and most people still can't see it, and it's not entirely because they'd rather not.
Do you know why, and do you know what this is they can't see? It's the dark matter. It's the universe most people are blind to, but which explains the universe they inhabit. It's the black thread that holds the visible light like dew on a web. That's parapolitics. That's para-everything. It's the night vision goggles through which the rationalists and the self-identifying skeptics never peer. To them, the darkness is contentless void. But it isn't. And any meaningful estimate of the situation, 2006, needs to account for it.